North Atlantic Right Whale
Habitat and Range
In it's western range, the North Atlantic right whale migrates along the United States east coast. It can be found from Nova Scotia to the southeastern United States.
In it's eastern range though, the North Atlantic right whale was once found in European waters from the coast of northern Europe to the northwestern coast of Africa. This population is thought to be extinct.
While calves may be eaten by orcas or large sharks, adult North Atlantic right whales have no predators outside of humans. Despite this, the North Atlantic right whale is still critically endangered.
The North Atlantic right whale is anywhere from 45 to 55 ft long. It can weigh up to 70 tons.
It has two blowholes that form a distinctive V-shape for the whale's spout.
It is mostly black, with whitish patches on the head and belly. It lacks a dorsal fin but has a deeply notched fluke. The thickened tissue on the whale is called a callosite and are home to many small amphipods.
"The North Atlantic right whale is critically endangered."
While it is not known for the age at which North Atlantic right whales can procreate, the females have to be at least 9 to 10 years old. Every 3 to 5 years after, they will often give birth again. Their mating season is in the winter in between their feeding season. There are only 300 to 450 North Atlantic right whales left. Because of this, they are critically endangered.
The North Atlantic right whale has long fringes of baleen instead of teeth which it uses to strain tiny animals, like zooplankton and copepods, from the water for food. Each side of the right whale's mouth has about 225 baleen plates that can reach up to 8 ft long. Other than zooplankton, the North Atlantic right whale also consumes krill. During their feeding season of spring to fall, a single North Atlantic right whale may consume up to 2,600 pounds of zooplankton per day.
They are known to emit low frequency sounds that resemble 'moans' and 'burping noises'. When they eat, water brushes across the baleen plates creating a "baleen rattle".